Those of you who aren’t familiar with Playdar, let me explain what it is. Playdar is a “Music Content Resolver.” Think a radar for music to play (play+radar = playdar). Now, i’m sure i probably just lost about 50% of my readers there. Those of you who are left, let me explain more in very general terms. Playdar allows a web page or a music service to take a song and then provide a source for that song. If the song is on your local computer it will play that file. If it is on your wife’s computer, it will play from there if it is connected. If it’s no where you specify, it will then look to the internet for the mp3 file. Basically, it will allow you to find any mp3 for any track.
As the co-founder of the music service Qloud I completely understand, respect, and fear the complexity around licensing music. And, any music service that charges users by play (Lala, Launch, etc.) is a challenging consumer experience. Something like Playdar, which allows the user to pay for content he/she doesn’t own and listen from a local (aka legal) location for the rest, could dramatically change the economic model for music services and allow more to experiment.
Even subscription services, which pay the music labels per play would benefit from something like this as many users play the same songs over and over. It might come to a point where once a user plays a track over 70 times the service just gives them the mp3 to download to caps the license fee for that track.
My hope is that many more legal options emerge around Playdar. The new music services of Spotify and MOG are just Rhapsody with more features and a better interface. It’s great to see some more innovation. Can’t wait to see what’s ahead